Senior Specialist, Head of Department, UK
Two years after the introduction of the DB2/4 MkII came the DB MkIII - the '2/4' suffix being dropped - 551 of which, mainly saloons, were made between March 1957 and July 1959, 55% of which were exported. Externally the most obvious change was the adoption of a DB3S-style grille, establishing the 'hallmark' look of subsequent Aston Martins, which had been drawn up by Tickford designer, Bert Thickpenny. This restyled nose give the car a more imposing look while the interior boasted a redesigned dashboard with instruments grouped in a cowled panel ahead of the driver.
The engine benefited from an extensive redesign by Tadek Marek (newly arrived from Austin) and featured, among other improvements, a stiffer block, stronger crankshaft and a new cylinder head with bigger valves. 162bhp was available with the single-pipe exhaust system, 178bhp with the optional twin-pipe version. Elsewhere there were improvements to both clutch and gearbox; Laycock overdrive became available and front disc brakes were standard rather than optional after the first 100 cars had been built, commencing at chassis '1401'. Despite the inevitable weight increase, the MkIII was faster than any of its predecessors with a top speed of 120mph.
If that still was not enough, customers could opt for more a powerful DBB and (later) DBD 'Special Series' engine. Introduced as an option at the 1958 London Motor Show, the DBD came with triple (sometimes twin) SU carburettors and produced 180bhp or 195 horsepower with the twin exhausts. This engine was fitted to 47 cars.
Unbeknown to many, the DB MkIII is another 'James Bond' Aston Martin, appearing in Ian Fleming's novel 'Goldfinger', though by the time the book made it to the screen the DB5 was the current model, so that was used instead.
One of only 85 DB MkIII drophead coupés made, chassis number '1609' left the factory equipped with DBA-type engine number '1229', which it retains, and a transmission overdrive. The Aston was delivered new to Guy Salmon Automobiles Ltd of Thames Ditton, Surrey and sold to its first owner, Mr Peter Cadbury of Ascot, Berkshire. The car's original registration number was '397 GPD'. The accompanying (copy) guarantee form lists only one subsequent owner – R J Horner Esq of Goodworth Clatford, Hampshire – and records the fitting of a Baldwin hydraulic brake booster shortly after delivery. The AMOC Register records participation at Silverstone in 1981 and 1982 when owned by Mr.'Lee'.
In 1987 the car moved to Germany and was owned by Dr Wulf Müller, who had extensive restoration work carried out by Norbert Hieber in München that same year. Related invoices and photographs are on file together with expired MoT certificates suggesting that the Aston subsequently returned to the UK. It appears that the car was scarcely driven during the 1990s, the mileage recorded on the MoT certificates increasing from 11,130 miles in 1989 to 12,297 miles in March 1999.
It moved to Germany again around 2002 and was registered in the name of its new owner, Mr Dietmar Binkowska, in 2003. The car then went back to Aston Workshop where it was bought by the current owner in 2009 for his private collection. It is registered in Belgium for 'daily driving', which means it has to pass the technical inspection every year.
Always meticulously maintained, this DB MkIII has been enjoyed by the current owner for the past 9 years. He recently changed the exterior colour to the very attractive British Racing Green, which suits the car admirably, the repaint being carried out to the highest standard by a local specialist. The owner has also had (adjustable) electric power steering installed by specialists EZ Power Steering in Holland. The early 'DB' Astons were frequently criticised for their heavy steering, and this simple and easily reversible modification makes them a dream to drive.
The car is well presented and has a beautifully patinated interior and highly original engine compartment. Sold only because of a lack of space and the vendor tells us it is ready for any journey. The car comes with current Belgian registration papers; FIVA Passport (2011); Aston Martin Certificate of Origin; a selection of photographs; old German registration papers; and the aforementioned documentation.
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|MOTORCYCLESIf purchased by a UK resident, this machine is subject to a NOVA declaration, whilst the responsibility of submitting the NOVA rests with the Buyer to do so, Bonhams will facilitate the process by engaging an agent (SHIPPIO) to undertake the NOVA and C88 (customs) application if applicable on the Buyer's behalf. A fee of £125 + VAT to do so will be added to the Buyer's invoice. CARSIf purchased by a UK resident, this machine is subject to a NOVA declaration, whilst the responsibility of submitting the NOVA rests with the Buyer to do so, Bonhams will facilitate the process by engaging an agent (CARS) to undertake the NOVA on the Buyer's behalf. A fee of £250 + VAT to do so will be added to the Buyer's invoice.|